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Masters of Education Portfolio of John Inman


Note: If you would like to review my leadership projects before reading my reflection, please go to the bottom of the page.

I have been a change agent by nature for years and have experienced through that work many failures. I believe that I have learned from each and integrated my work alterations in my approach to help insure success the next time around. My experience in leadership has, however, been a small contribution to my knowledge compared with the study and research my work on leadership in the cohort has  provided. 

The most recent pre-course reference I studied on leadership was Leading Change by John Kotter. The resource provided me with some clear indications as to why my prior change efforts had failed. Not enough critical mass. Not enough communication. Not a small enough effort. No short term wins. And not enough support just to name a few. As enlightening as these revelations were, they were all process issues, not representations of leadership characteristics. 

Coming into this course, I had a clear picture of the leader I wanted to discover and define. A leader focused on leading in a living system. A leader focused on serving. A leader focused on conversation. A leader with a passion for the development of the members of his community. A leader with heart. A leader that cared about the world. My vision provided me with the filter through which I chose the materials to study for my work. 

My work in clarifying my leadership framework has not so much changed who I am or what I do but it has provided me with a clear understanding of what forms the foundation for my beliefs. Clarity has only reinforced my resolve to be the leader I envision. Clarity has also created more frustration for me when interfacing with those who clearly cannot or will not provide leadership. Conversation has become such a crucial part of who I am that I become very frustrated when those around me communicate poorly. 

So given my passions and interests, I started out with a vague concept of  leadership and through extensive study and reflection, I have developed a philosophy, definition, and set of attributes that provides me with the foundation for my work for the rest of my life. 

My research and reading finally included resources from 20 different sources, all complementing each other, and all helping me to weave a complex network of characteristics and attributes of the leader I envisioned becoming. And interestingly enough, not a one came from Leading Change by John Kotter. Not including any of Kotter's material was an extraordinary insight to someone who had seen Kotter's work as answering questions that had been lingering for years. 

The work to develop this leadership portfolio was crucial to me as a graduate student seeking to continue my education. The rigor involved in learning how to produce a well referenced paper written in APA format was very important to me and I highly value the demands that were made on me to produce a quality paper. The work I have done in this course will be invaluable to me as I move into my doctorate program. 

Leadership Attributes

My leadership portfolio found at the link below provides a detailed treatment of my leadership framework. The leadership attributes that are important to my practice represented within this portfolio are:

  • Living systems perspective

  • Transparency

  • Vision

  • Integrity

  • Asking questions that matter

  • Create conversations

  • Creating feedback loops

  • Tapping into the potential of the team

  • Curiosity

  • Passion

  • Courage

Leadership Portfolio

Copyright © John Inman January 1, 2003